Monday, June 28, 2010

It’s Mosquito Time!

It’s Mosquito Time!

Even the low-desert in Arizona has mosquitoes. With the upcoming rains it is important to check your yard and gardens for standing water. Here are some typical places to check:

• Ridding your backyard of standing water. Common places include old tires, buckets, wheelbarrows, gutters, and pet dishes.

• Emptying plastic wading pools, birdbaths, plant pots, or drip trays every four to five days.

Draining standing puddles, ditches, tree holes, or tree stumps.

• Ensuring your swimming pools and decorative ponds/fountains are clean and operational.

• Fixing or installing window and door screens around your home, and properly maintaining your evaporative cooler.

• Avoiding over-watering your lawn.

For more detailed information about mosquitoes and to get an email with WHERE and WHEN Maricopa County is spraying the pesticide check their website: or cut & paste this into your browser -

Mosquitoes are more than annoying. In some parts of the U.S. they carry the West Nile Virus. You can help repel them from you naturally by applying these to your skin and you will smell great too! Use Vanilla Oil (REAL vanilla oil from Mexico) or Lavender Oil dabbed on your wrists.

Safe Gardening,
The Garden Goddess

Friday, June 18, 2010

AZ Garden Resources - friends of mine

AZ Garden Resources - new friends of mine

Today I came across some great resources for AZ Gardeners: Heirloom Seeds, recipes and good advice Bill McDormand is an expert is seed saving techniques and practices Heirloom seeds, plant information, recipes and sustainable living advice - this company helps lawn and garden businesses with new product launches as well as selling a business or acquiring one.

These fine folks are all members of the Garden Writers Association, which I am too!

Please check them out and tell them The Garden Goddess sent you!

Ahppy Digging

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Garden Dissapointment

Garden Dissapointment

Maybe I should be de-throwned - take away my goddess-hood - my garden looks awful!  This is the time of year - as we lead into summer - when plants begin to slow down, tomatoes stop flowering and the garden looks sad - pitiful.

I also have a few dead Bachelor Button plants in the garden becuase they are shading the peppers and cucumbers. And I laid down alfalfa hay as a mulch - so it's just not as pretty as the winter/spring garden.

It is also the fact that I have a hard time pulling anything out of the garden.  I let the hollyhocks, bachelors buttons, and mexican hats grow full term and go to seed - (ALMOST - I pulled them earlier this year so they wouldn't re-seed this time) that I do not have room for the next season's plants or seeds early enough in the year.

So I PROMISE that I will become better at planning on paper and with a calendar so I can grow more food and keep the flowers to their own space so I may keep the honorary title of Garden Goddess and I will be equally PROUD of my summer garden as I am of my wionter garden!

What are you growoing in your garden this summer and how are you protecting it from the sun?

Safe Sunning!
The Garden Goddess - a NEWLY redesigned websiute - please visit!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Mesquite Trees provide a Healthy Food

This traditional Native American food is produced by gathering ripened seedpods from the mesquite tree and grinding them into high protein flour. Mesquite meal or flour is low carb, low fat, and low glycemic. The Arizona Natives; Velvet Mesquite, Honey Mesquite and Screw Bean Mesquite are best for a sweet tasting bean and hence good tasting flour.

The flour can be added to breads, cookies and similar things or it can be eaten by itself. Mesquite pods have lots of natural sugars, protein, calcium, and soluble fiber, which make it a nutritious and tasty food from the desert

The height of mesquite bean picking occurs typically in June (before the monsoons) and September (after the monsoons). The beans need to be picked from the trees when the beans are dry. It is a tight window to get them before they hit the ground.

If you want to begin collecting the mesquite beans here are the specifics:

• Collect only dry beans.

• Collect only beans that are on the trees (spread a sheet on the ground and shake the branches.) DO NOT collect beans from the ground as you don’t know what kind of pollutants or other contaminants have gotten on them.

- Make sure that no pesticides are sprayed in the area where the beans are collected as it will become part of the flour

There is a specific way to grind them (you could ruin your blender if you try it your self!) with a hammermill.  There is usually one availaible on the fall through the Phoenix Permaculture Guild,

OR join ME this coming Saturday, June 5th for a walk-about in a city park to kearn how to identify the trees and learn more about this wonderful native food!
Happy Picking!
The Garden Goddess,


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